Well, that was fun: another Fashion Month has come and gone. Now that we've had time to regroup, it seems like this one was a lot more eventful than seasons past. Certainly a lot of the excitement had to do with the new arrivals at Dior and Saint Laurent, but those weren't the only happenings that caused a stir this month. From the critic who got into public spats with two high-profile designers to the most recognizable accessory of the season, we examine the reasons why the Spring 2013 collections will stick out in our minds for years to come.
"Yvan is a really talented designer," von Furstenberg said. "He joined DVF almost three years ago, and he helped me to brand it. He was very, very helpful. I think he had a good time. He saw a whole other way of seeing fashion and doing fashion, and then he felt like his mission was accomplished, so we parted."
Citing a press release from von Furstenberg's team, previous reports said Mispelaere would not be replaced, and that an in-house team would lead the design process. But the designer herself — who has counted Catherine Malandrino among her creative directors — seemed open to bringing another young designer into the fold.
"I think that he put together a really dynamic team," she said of Mispelaere. "There's a lot of talented designers, and I love the idea of having a laboratory."
Von Furstenberg was similarly vague about the implications of another staff change: the hiring of former Tommy Hilfiger executive Joel Horowitz as cochairman. Some have suggested Horowitz will help the company go public, but von Furstenberg wouldn't discuss specifics of his job.
"I realize that I have created a brand. And I look back and there's a big body of work and there's a huge recognition," she said. "I really have an asset — that's something that can go on after me. . . . It's a platform to build the next step."
Just when it seemed that the DVF label was hitting its stride with creative director Yvan Mispelaere at the helm comes the sudden news that he is out the door. His departure, the brand says, is effective immediately.
"I am so grateful for the contributions Yvan brought to DVF and fully support him as he takes the next step in his career," Diane von Furstenberg said in a statement released by the company Tuesday. "Yvan joined us almost three years ago and has added enormous value. He also put together a highly skilled design team to support our growth both in fashion and accessories. I am very thankful and proud of his accomplishments here and I look forward to our strong team continuing to create the signature DVF look for women everywhere." As of now, the company says it has no plans to replace him.
With stints at Chloé, Valentino, and Gucci under his belt, Mispelaere was largely credited with bringing a renewed sense of polish, as well as a refined eye for color, to the DVF brand. The collection he and von Furstenberg presented for Fall 2012, for example, was one of that season's more memorable New York Fashion Week shows. And though Spring 2013, shown only a few days ago at Lincoln Center, somewhat lacked that same sense of power and focus, it was still plenty gorgeous. One has to wonder if that lack of cohesion was the result of Mispelaere knowing he may have soon been on his way out.
"I came to DVF to help further the brand's mission and create a world-class design team. I am confident we have been able to achieve that during my time with the company," Mispelaere said in the statement. "I can't thank Diane enough for the opportunity to work with her and such talented people. The group is now well-positioned for even greater success, and I am eager to take on my next challenge." Yvan, we're looking forward to that too.
Just two days after the showing of his stunning Spring '13 collection for Diane von Furstenberg, it has just been announced that effectively immediately, Yvan Mispelaere is out at DVF. The talented French designer took the creative director role at the brand in 2010, injecting a well-received fresh, feminine, modern touch to the DVF brand with his bold use of prints, colors, and effortlessly sexy silhouettes. "I can't thank Diane enough for the opportunity to work with her and such talented people," said Mispelaere. "The group is now well-positioned for even greater success, and I am eager to take on my next challenge." Reasons on Mispelaere's sad and sudden exit are unclear — he will not be replaced and Diane von Furstenberg will lead the design team — but some speculate that it might be related to the arrival of new co-chairman Joel Horowitz, former CEO of Tommy Hilfiger. Take a look at some of our favorite pieces from Mispelaere's DVF helm as we wish the designer best of luck in his future endeavors.
Diane von Furstenberg and Yvan Mispelaere looked to the skyscrapers of New York, the sunsets of California, and the saturated gardens of the South — in short, all the vast inspiration the US has to offer — for Resort 2013. Titled Zoom, the collection was filled with many of the same easy silhouettes that Mispelaere has excelled at in recent seasons: cape-back jackets, loosely gathered dresses, and softly flowing tuxedo pants. Head-to-toe prints — some geometric and based on the cobblestones near von Furstenberg's Meatpacking studio, others looser and inspired by the Rockabilly playfulness of Memphis — were also a draw; they covered everything from silky tees to pleated skirts.
Designers have been sticking to a more neutral palette for Winter but not Diane von Furstenberg and Yvan Mispelaere. Showing to a celebrity-filled crowd at Lincoln Center — we spotted Solange, Molly Sims, Coco Rocha, and Barbara Walters in the crowd — the duo filled the runway with gorgeous color combos in every jewel tone imaginable. The theme of the collection was "rendezvous," further explained in the show notes as "glamorous at a moment's notice." The outcome was sexy, effortless French-inspired dressing in the way of formfitting wool jersey dresses, wrap skirts, office-appropriate separates, and drapey asymmetric jumpsuits. A pink rendition of the latter, paired with an oversized dark burgundy coat, was one of the highlights of the collection. Whimsical prints — puzzle pieces, quotation marks, and keyholes, were splayed across an array of wrap skirts, oversized coats, and blouses, emoting a sense of mysterious quirk. Whether you're a working woman or just looking to paint the town red, DVF has you covered.
- Trends: Sheer insets, high slits, halter and racerback details.
- Colors: Raspberry, seafoam green, scarlet red, dark teal, black, mustard yellow.
- Key Piece: We loved the asymmetric pink jumpsuit paired with a gorgeous dark burgundy coat.
- Accessories: Oversized clutches, box clutches, printed satchel bags, leather opera length gloves, ankle-strap pumps.
- Who Would Wear It: Girls who crave effortless, sexy silhouettes and bright hues like Zoe Saldana and front row attendees Molly Sims and Solange.
>> Diane von Furstenberg was planning on spending a week skiing in Aspen, but unfortunately it didn't turn out that way, she emailed WWD: “Barry [Diller] and I were skiing happily. Some Brazilian man, who could not ski, lost control and went straight at me, hitting me badly on my face and ribs (with his camera). I went to the emergency room and then flew to UCLA. I look like Mike Tyson on his worst fight. Broken nose and some light facial fractures. At home in L.A. now waiting to heal. Will be staying here the week because I have my children and grandkids. I guess it could have been worse…but it does NOT look pretty.” She later Tweeted: "I guess i was lucky although i get scared when i look in the mirror." But it sounds like her Fall 2011 collection won't be affected: “Thank god I have Yvan Mispelaere [her creative director] in the sample room.” [WWD]
In a Fashion Week interview, Diane von Furstenberg explains the desired take-away from her Spring 2011 runway show: thoughts of optimism, beauty, women, nature, and happiness. DVF goes on to explain her inspiration and hopes for the collection. Diane von Furstenberg's new Creative Director Yvan Mispelaere discusses feeling inspired by the collection, the DVF woman, and collaborating with von Furstenberg herself.
>> On Valentine's Day, Nathan Jenden will take his last runway bow as creative director of Diane von Furstenberg before shipping off to focus exclusively on his own collection, launched in 2006.
In his stead, von Furstenberg has hired Yvan Mispelaere, who was a member of Phoebe Philo's design team at Chloe and took a runway bow after her exit. He then left Chloe to join Gucci under Frida Giannini in 2006.
Jenden has been with von Furstenberg since 2001; she invested in his eponymous line when it launched and will continue to do so after Jenden leaves her company. “I have an interest in his company and I have an interest in his future, and if he wants to show in New York, then I will help him as the president of the CFDA,” von Furstenberg explained.
Jenden admitted he might show in New York in the future; he has been showing in London to give him time between von Furstenberg's show and his own. He also has plans to expand his collection into resort and accessories in the near future.